i'm jonathan betz, here are the stories al jazeera is following at this hour: a steefr cold snap is gripping much of the nation. several deaths have been linked to the freezing temperatures, including the driver of a truck that lost control after sliding off a bridge in texas. messy conditions and airport delays from virginia to new england. >> increasing tensions it asia over the disputed islands. south korea is expanding its air defense zone obvious lapping with one announced by china, and going into effect on december 15th >> people across south africa and the world are honouring the legacy of nelson mandela.